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Changing Careers | Joan Wild

By: Alex Nikotina

Published On: September 28, 2016

Joan Wild is a true professional, confident in her skills and abilities and eager to make a positive impact in the HR field. Having changed her career in the early 2000s, Joan is still going strong, overcoming the challenges and mentoring others.

Immersed in HR

Joan Wild
Joan jokes that she was not the one who chose her career – the career found her. “I have always worked in a human resources-related field, in one form or another,” she laughs.

Joan’s original plan was to go into teaching, but she soon realized that she didn’t see herself in that field. Joan spent some time working in administrative roles before making a decision to go into the Early Childhood Education (ECE). “In ECE we learn a lot about growth and development,” shares Joan. “Part of what I learned there actually gave me a deeper understanding of HR.”

It’s Never Too Late

Joan’s decision to transition into the HR field was carefully thought through. “Changing careers at a later age requires more research and planning. I knew I had the transferable skills I could apply towards the HR position, but I wanted more education to go with it.”

Joan took the Diploma in Human Resources Management Program at Ashton College. “I did my research and I could see that the program at Ashton would be a great fit and I was right. It was very relevant to someone in my situation, and I enjoyed the flexible format and the supportive environment of the college.”

“As an adult learner, I was looking to change my career, and I had different needs than a typical student straight out of high school would have. Looking back, I am happy that the instructors and the staff supported me accordingly.”

“I got everything I wanted: I was able to manage the program, do the exams, and change jobs all at the same time.”

Taking on the Challenges

Because of Joan’s experiences and background, she was able to move right into a management role after graduation. “My current role is a Human Capital Adviser of an accounting firm. We have offices in Abbotsford, Chilliwack and Surrey, and I get to assist and support those offices,” says Joan.

When talking about her job, Joan is always excited about new opportunities and new challenges. Her motto is approaching every challenge with a positive attitude.

“Challenges are chances to learn how to do things differently. My goal is to see challenges as opportunities to learn new things, meet new people, evolve and grow.”

“Recently, our firm had a major merger in the Surrey area – the largest merger we had to date,” she shares. “This event directly affected me, as I was assisting with the merge. It wasn’t the easiest task, but I definitely enjoyed taking on this change and solution-seeking for any challenges that came with it.”

Joan is also eager to help students and young professionals on their growth journey. “I am working to support students who are looking into exploring different employment opportunities,” shares Joan. “I myself took a few turns in my career before I found the area where I truly belonged. I know how important it is for those who are starting out to have guidance and mentorship in their career journey.”

“If my experiences and expertise can help other students on their career path, this is the best reward I can ask for.”

Still Going Strong

“As one turns 65, people assume you are going to retire soon – but that’s not always the case,” says Joan laughing. “If you were to ask my family, they would probably say I’ll be working for the next 10-15 years!”

Even though Joan is laughing about it, the joy she gains from doing her job and adding value to her company is undeniable. “I am not planning on making any changes for now. I have been with my firm for 8 years, and I want to continue to do my job as long as I provide value to the company and its employees.”

“I want to continue to do what I love – and love what I do.”


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